After the Booker T. Washington Public High School in Pensacola, Florida, placed best-selling author and popular Boing Boing blog editor Cory Doctorow’s young adult novel Little Brother on its “One School/One Book” summer reading list, the school’s administration promptly cancelled the school-wide reading program.
In a blog post on Friday, Doctorow argued that the school’s motivations for gutting the program included the administration’s desire to shield students from his book’s politics and content. The school’s principal, Michael J. Roberts, cited reviews that emphasized the novel’s “positive view of questioning authority, lauding ‘hacker culture,’ discussing sex and sexuality in passing” as his motivation for trying to steer students clear of the book. He also said that a parent complained about profanity in the book.
Doctorow countered that there is no profanity in the book, “though there’s a reference to a swear word.” What’s more, Doctorow wrote that his publisher, Tor, has now agreed to send 200 copies of the book to the school, along with two lithograph posters containing the full text of the novel.
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